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Forces should prepare to maintain superiority in areas like information, cyber warfare: Vice Prez

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu inspecting the Guard of Honour on his arrival at 191 BN Border Security Force, Jaisalmer A PTI Photo

JAISALMER/JODHPUR (PTI):  The armed forces must establish their supremacy in new areas of conflict like information and cyber space, while maintaining their edge in conventional war preparedness, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu said on Monday, noting that the geo-strategic environment was turning "unpredictable".

He also said that preparations should be made for increased use of robotics and drones in the battlefield.

"We are facing both symmetric and asymmetric threats from outside and within," Naidu said, adding that the "geo-strategic environment around us was turning unpredictable".

While interacting with Indian Army personnel in Jaisalmer, he also urged the forces to prepare themselves to dominate not only in a conventional war but also establish their superiority in the new and emerging areas of conflict such as information and cyber warfare along with the increasing use of robotics and drones in the battlefield.

The vice president termed peace as a necessary condition for development and said that Indian forces have a great responsibility to maintain peace and stability on the country's borders and within the country as well, according to an official statement.

"The nation is assured that any misadventure by an adversary will be given a befitting reply by the Indian Army," he told the troops of army's Battle Axe Division (12 RAPID).

Naidu was visiting the Jaisalmer War Museum and he was received by Major General Ajeet Singh Gahlot, the General Officer Commanding 12 RAPID.

Reiterating that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India, the vice president said that by abrogating Article 370, which was a temporary provision, the Parliament has removed a major barrier between the people of Jammu and Kashmir and the rest of India.

Later, in a Facebook post, Naidu urged people to visit a war museum to know about the sacrifices made by brave soldiers.

During the visit, Naidu also paid homage to martyrs.

Naidu also visited a Border Security Force (BSF) battalion headquarters in Jaisalmer where he was given the guard of honour.

The vice president addressed a Sainik Sammelan there and appreciated BSF personnel, saying the force remains ready to protect the country's borders even in inaccessible areas and also prevents internal security threats such as naxal violence.

Referring to the growing threats along the border, Naidu said it is necessary for the forces to remain alert, looking at the encouragement and support which is given from across the border to cross-border terrorism, drug smuggling and anti-India activities.

He lauded the BSF for effectively addressing growing threats like enemy drones.

The vice president said he expects the BSF to increase training of jawans in the field of latest technology as well, the statement said.

Naidu assured jawans that the government is making all possible efforts to improve facilities for them. For this, the connectivity of roads and communication in remote border areas is being improved and strengthened, he said.

Naidu expressed satisfaction over the increasing number of women in the security forces.

Naidu left Jaisalmer for Jodhpur where he visited the historic Mehrangarh Fort on the occasion of World Tourism Day.

He described the fort as a golden symbol of the pride of Rajasthan, the statement said.

Governor Kalraj Mishra and state energy minister BD Kalla also accompanied the vice president during the visit.

Naidu will attend different programmes in Jodhpur and will return on September 30.

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